Baby Steps

My son is 1 years old. He sometimes sits and does the same thing over and over and over again… Then he tries something different.

I was watching him play with two blocks and he put them together only to pull them apart and he would do this for ages without a break. He was obviously very fascinated in how they fit together, but he was so fascinated with these two particular blocks that he didn’t notice all the other blocks and toys around him.

I began to wonder if he would ever get bored when he suddenly giggled to himself and dropped both of the blocks and picked up his toy truck. From studying child psychology, I understand that repetition is a part of reinforcing learning, but I thought about all the times I kept doing the same thing over and over, not seeing all the other posibilities around me, missing out on other opportunities to grow and learn because I was so fixated on what I was doing.

What learning are we reinforcing when we keep doing things that make us miserable or bored or frustrated? We simply reinforce those feelings and build up resistance to change by making excuses for why we are not trying something else. It is important to also bare in mind that for adults repetition is a sign of being trapped.

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